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Norwich vs West Ham – Match Preview

Norwich will be without Alex Tettey, who is completing a two-game ban.

Graham Dorrans returns after illness, but Andre Wisdom has a knee injury.

West Ham’s injury problems have grown with Winston Reid, Joey O’Brien (both hamstring) and Cheikhou Kouyate (concussion) all out with injuries suffered in the midweek FA Cup win.

Alex Song has shaken off the knock that kept him out of that game, while Sam Byram is available again after being cup-tied.

Editor’s Note: Norwich are on a dogged run of form as of late as they have lost their last 5 matches, that run has seem they fall into the bottom 3 and on the performances of the last few weeks you have to wonder how they will pull themselves back out of it, Today they host a West Ham side who have very serious European aspirations going into the final third of the season.

It’s been a miserable month or so for Alex Neil and his Norwich side, they’ve been shipping Goals as if they are going out of fashion, those 5 defeats have seen them concede 16 times with the most crushing of those defeats being a 5-4 home loss to Liverpool. That game sums up Norwich perfectly, they’ve been pretty useful up front but the Defending has let them down on too many occasions this season.

Last time out they lost away to basement side Aston Villa, a result that just about keeps Villa’s faint hopes of survival alive but does absolutely no favours for Norwich. That defeat for The Canaries coupled with Newcastle’s win over West Brom saw Steve McClaren’s side leapfrog them into 17th place. Today they task gets no easier as they entertain a West Ham side who are coming off the back of a dramatic F.A. Cup win in Midweek.

The Hammers looked set to have to deal with the lottery of Penalties on Wednesday but were spared that thanks to a late late extra time winner which saw them overcome Liverpool for the third time this season and progress to the 5th Round of the Cup. They currently find themselves 6th in the League although they passed up an opportunity to go 5th last week.

They lost what was an admittedly drab encounter at Southampton last Saturday evening, a game which saw them fail to take advantage of their numerical superiority once Victor Wanayama was shown a Red Card for the third time this season. It was a rare quiet night for Dimitri Payet but they’ll be hoping now that he has signed a new contract at the club until 2021 that will show as to exactly why he has that contract with a match winning performance.

Once again it’s the injury curse that just won’t go away from Upton Park with another set of injuries collected during the Cup replay so that will mean another reshuffle for Slaven Bilic, although Sam Byram could be pushing for a start after being cup tied in the week.

Even with West Ham’s injury woes I still think they will have more than enough in their locker to get the best of Norwich. If Payet is up for it and really feels like celebrating his new contract then the Norwich back line could be in a lot of grief. Unfortunately for Norwich I have a feeling it’s going to be 6 on the bounce in terms of losses as The Hammers strengthen their possible European credentials. An away win for me.

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